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Participation in Heterogeneous Communities

Listed author(s):
  • La Ferrara, Eliana
  • Alesina, Alberto

This paper studies what determines group formation and the degree of participation when the population is heterogeneous, both in terms of income and race or ethnicity. We are especially interested in whether and how much the degree of heterogeneity in communities influences the amount of participation in different types of groups. Using survey data on group membership and data on U. S. localities, we find that, after controlling for many individual characteristics, participation in social activities is significantly lower in more unequal and in more racially or ethnically fragmented localities. We also find that those individuals who express views against racial mixing are less prone to participate in groups the more racially heterogeneous their community is. These results are consistent with our model of group formation.

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File URL: http://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/4551796/alesina_participation.pdf
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Paper provided by Harvard University Department of Economics in its series Scholarly Articles with number 4551796.

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Date of creation: 2000
Publication status: Published in Quarterly Journal of Economics
Handle: RePEc:hrv:faseco:4551796
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Web page: http://www.economics.harvard.edu/

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  1. Romer, Paul M, 1986. "Increasing Returns and Long-run Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(5), pages 1002-1037, October.
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  4. Alberto Alesina & Eliana La Ferrara, 2000. "Participation in Heterogeneous Communities," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(3), pages 847-904.
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  24. Alberto Alesina & Reza Baqir & Caroline Hoxby, 2004. "Political Jurisdictions in Heterogeneous Communities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(2), pages 348-396, April.
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  27. Conley, John P. & Wooders, Myrna, 1996. "Taste-homogeneity of optimal jurisdictions in a Tiebout economy with crowding types and endogenous educational investment choices," Ricerche Economiche, Elsevier, vol. 50(4), pages 367-387, December.
  28. DiPasquale, Denise & Glaeser, Edward L., 1999. "Incentives and Social Capital: Are Homeowners Better Citizens?," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 354-384, March.
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